Explore the coastline by nimble sea kayaks to reach otherwise inaccessible beaches and coves. Learn more about the water and waves as you explore. When sea kayaking you are much closer to the water than in other vessels, giving you an intimate experience with the sea, and the plants and animals that thrive there.

Where to go and when

We offer sea kayaking trips in the south of France and Egypt. UCPA Hyeres is open all summer, the average temperatures in the summer are between 19°C and 24°C so a very pleasant temperature to be out on the water. July and August are the hottest times to go, but generally summer conditions are felt in the south of France from May to October. The best month to swim/kayak in the sea is in August when the average sea temperature is 24°C. The best time to visit Egypt is during the northern hemisphere fall, winter or early spring (October to May), when temperatures are lower.
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Is kayaking the same as canoeing?

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They may look very similar, but they are in fact quite different. In short, canoeing involves sitting or kneeling in an open boat using a paddle with one blade. Whereas in a kayak, you sit down with your legs in front of you, while propelling forward with a double bladed paddle.

It is worth noting that the sea behaves very differently to lakes and rivers. So unless you are very experienced in the sea or a very strong river kayaker - you may be in for a surprise!

 

How fit do you need to be?

No previous experience is necessary for the UCPA courses that we sell, however, you do need to have a good level of fitness. Don't think that kayaking is the easy option! A good level of fitness is very helpful for this course. Being able to swim is essential.

You will notice the muscles in your shoulders becoming tired quite quickly, as well as your core and hands. Occasionally your hands will blister so it is worthwhile bringing plasters/Compeed as precautionary measures!

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What ​do I need whilst kayaking?

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Baselayers - not to keep you warm! But to keep you cool and to keep the sun off your skin. Such as a UV rash vest.

Shoes - any water shoes will work well for landings to protect your feet.

Hat - a brimmed hat and suncream will be very helpful!​​

Dry bag - to keep clothes and valuables dry, as dry hatches are not always as waterproof as they seem.

Large bottle of water - do not underestimate how much fluid you need to take on when out at sea. Not only because of the sun but because of the physical exertion. 

Thinking about your impact on the sea

Sea friendly suncream - we want you to protect the sea, but we also want you to protect your skin. The best option at the moment for is to swap out those chemical sunscreens for ones with mineral ingredients like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide that reflect the sun off your skin, without threatening the environment. Consult with a medical professional to ensure you have the cover you need, if in doubt.

Plastic - of course plastic is bad for the ocean. Try to ensure that any packaging you take with you, you bring back with you. And then recycle accordingly! 

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